Idioms - P (page 1)

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put through their paces

Defined: If you put someone or something through their paces, you test their ability to do something by making them perform certain actions.
Example: During the presentation, the machine was put through its paces.

pack of lies

Defined: A large number of untruthful statements is referred to as a pack of lies.
Example: The story about her unhappy childhood turned out to be a pack of lies.

pack something in

Defined: If you pack something in, you abandon it or give it up.
Example: She found city life so stressful, she decided to pack it in and move to the country.

packed like sardines

Defined: If a group of people are packed like sardines, they are pressed together tightly and uncomfortably because there is not enough space.
Example: The bus was very crowded - we were packed like sardines!

pad the bill

Defined: If someone pads the bill, they add false items to a bill or invoice in order to increase the total amount.
Example: Check the invoice carefully before paying - he tends to pad the bill!

paddle own canoe

Defined: If you paddle your own canoe, you do what you want to do without help or interference from anyone.
Example: He decided to paddle his own canoe and set up his own business.

paid peanuts

Defined: If you are paid peanuts, you have a very low salary.
Example: Jenny has a very interesting job, but she's paid peanuts.

pain in the neck

Defined: If you call someone a pain in the neck, you think they are very irritating or annoying.
Example: She's a pain in the neck the way she keeps complaining!

paint the town red

Defined: If you paint the town red, you go out and enjoy a lively evening in bars, night-clubs, etc.
Example: To celebrate the victory, the team's supporters painted the town red.

paint into a corner

Defined: If you paint yourself into a corner, you put yourself into a situation that restricts what you can do or say.
Example: Carole told her boss she was busy on Friday evening. She realized she had painted herself into a corner when he said : 'Too bad! I was going to give you two tickets for the opera."

press the panic button

Defined: If you hit or press the panic button, you raise the alarm too quickly or react too hastily in a difficult or stressful situation.
Example: Calm down! There's no need to press the panic button yet!

paper over cracks

Defined: To say that someone is papering over the cracks means that they are concealing a problem rather than dealing with it effectively.
Example: The measures taken to reduce unemployment are just paper over the cracks.

paper tiger

Defined: This term refers to a person, organization or country that is less powerful or threatening than they appear to be.
Example: He threatens to take strong action but he's just another paper tiger.

paper trail

Defined: If a person or organization leaves a paper trail, they leave evidence in writing or in document form that will serve as proof of their actions.
Example: The police found a paper trail which lead to the author of the hoax.

on paper

Defined: To say that an idea, plan or scheme seems good on paper means that it looks good in theory or in writing but may not work when put into practice.
Example: His plan looks good on paper but I'm not convinced it will work.

par for the course

Defined: If something is par for the course, it is typical of what to expect in that particular situation.
Example: I spent the week-end working on the project but nobody showed any appreciation. That's par for the course in this firm.

part and parcel

Defined: Something that is part and parcel of an activity or role is a key component or an essential element that cannot be avoided.
Example: I'm an events manager. Travelling is paart and parcel of my job.

parting shot

Defined: A parting shot is a final remark, often incisive or disparaging, made just as one is leaving.
Example: He has a way of making parting shots that can be very discouraging.

partner in crime

Defined: A person who helps you to plan something dishonest or unlawful is called your partner in crime.
Example: Sam was my partner in crime. He hid my son's bicycle until his birthday.

party is over

Defined: To say that the party is over means that a period of happiness, freedom, enjoyment etc. has come to an end, and life is going to return to normal.
Example: I had a wonderful time here but the party's over and I must get back to work.

pass the buck

Defined: If you say that someone is passing the buck, you are accusing them of not taking responsibility for a problem and letting others deal with it instead.
Example: Whenever a customer comes to complain, she always finds a way of looking busy - a great way of passing the buck!

Page 1 (Continued on Page 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 ).


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